Field-to-plate: VT college students try farming

07/06/09 6:06AM

While other college students are in stuffy classrooms, about a dozen are earning credit tending a Vermont farm.

For 13 weeks, 12 credits and about $12,500, the Green Mountain College students plow fields with oxen or horses, milk cows, weed crops and grow and make their own food, part of an intensive course in sustainable agriculture using the least amount of fossil fuels.

More than 80 schools now have hands-on and classroom-based farm programs, but students elsewhere often don't earn as many credits as Green Mountain College students do.

One of them, 18-year-old Cassie Callahan of Conway, N.H., is working on a research project involving watering plants with gray water collected from the farm's solar shower. Her real love is working with draft horses, and hopes to become a farmer.

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